Tag Archives: good enough parenting

DARE TO BE REAL

Before you become a parent, you expect to do it right.  You think it will be easy. Great expectations. Reality sets in along with the sleepless nights of parenthood.

New Parent

Thinking parenting is easy until you actually become one is common.  Also common is assuming you will do it right and that means you will not do the things your parents did that hurt you.  Great expectations and delusional.

We model our parenting on our parents. The good news is that even those raised by abusive parents manage to be less abusive.  The statistics show that almost all who physically abused their children had been physically abused.  What is left out of that pictures is the fact that only about 30% of those physically abused became physically abusive.  The picture is murkier when it comes to emotional abuse, but the whole concept and understanding of emotional abuse is murkier.

Sooner or later, most of  you will  find yourself  doing something to your child, you promised yourself you would never do. Happens more than you think.  I promised my self,  I would never yell at my kids the way my mother yelled at me.  A promise broken more times than I want to admit. Sigh.

Good enough news:  all things considered, my Mom and I were  both “Good enough” parents.  Most parents are and if you are reading this obviously you are doing your best to be not just good enough, but better than good.

staying strong

Too much is expected of parents.  Too many expectations that cannot be met. The media has created the idea there are perfect parents somewhere in the world. Lies, lies, and more lies.  Parenting is a messy business and perfect parents a myth.

Who drives these ideas and why?   The most innocent explanation lies in the fact that most  people  identify strongest with a hurting child, not with parents who hurt.  That is often why many hurt as children  become therapists. Some studies show that over 70% of all counselors and therapists belong to a category called “Wounded healer.”

Wanting to share what you have learned from  the lessons pain has taught you drives many.  It drives me.  It drives the hundreds of parent bloggers as well as the majority of therapists and counselors.

Reality check:  the research also shows that helping others and sharing knowledge soothes the healer.  I get a high when someone likes, shares, or comments on one of my posts. I feel of value and that is what all crave.

A less innocent explanation also exists.  Seeking profits.  Doing so is often innocent.  I’d like to make some money from my efforts.  The difficulties emerge when profit seeking gets tied to false promises.  Promises of “Peaceful Parenting” is a false promise.; so is the idea that if you “Just do it” you will reach your goal; such promises sell better than all more reality based efforts.

Finally, another less innocent explanation exists.  When people have a bit of money to spare and are promised happiness or the fulfillment of another great expectation if only they buy this product or use that service; people  buy, buy,  and buy some more.

My advice: Go for good enough, almost good enough, and accept the bad as offering you a lesson to do better next time.  Learn my CARE response and use it when both when you fail to be your best and when your children fail to be their best. Here it is.

The CARE Plan

Finally, learning my  Daily Twelve Emotional Fitness Exercises  builds the calm needed to accept life’s less than happy moments.   The link takes you to my Free eBook describing each of the exercises.  Once learned each is easily practiced. Each one was specifically designed to improve  #EmotionalIntelligence.

Remember that liking, commenting, or sharing is an act of social media kindness.  Practicing kindness  strengthens you and helps me and others.

As always, thank you for your support, it means a great deal to me.

Katherine

Today’s EFTI FREE Poster Coach

This one describes each of the 12 Daily Exercises.

!2 Easy Emotional Fitness Poster

 LINKS OF INTEREST

STOP LYING

Cartoon about smelling Xmas panic in the air.

Hugs to Doug Savage for allowing me to use his cartoons to start many of my Emotional Fitness Daily posts with a laugh.

My Story of Killing of Santa: My two older brothers waged a two-year war trying to convince me there was no Santa.  My mother fought their efforts. My brothers finally won that war, when I climbed on to a Santa’s lap in our local department store and smelled cigarettes and liquor on the Jolly Old Man’s breath.  The anger I felt about having been lied to about not just Santa, but the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and Tinkerbell lived for  many years in my heart.

So do you remember when you discovered Santa was a lie? Did that start your awareness that parents did not always tell the truth?

PARENTING ADVICE ABOUT TRUTH AND LIES

Because I felt so betrayed by my mother who tried to keep Santa alive against my brother’s efforts, when I became a parent, I labeled Santa and all the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and even Tinkerbell as not real Now, I would be a bit less doctrinaire, but once a child began to have his or her doubts, I do not continue to promote myths as reality.   I also make an effort to tell my grandchildren some things are toys and make-believe. Doing so does not take away their pleasure or cut their magical thinking; it does lay the ground work for when their brains leap forward into a more reality based thought process.

Our emotions distort reality often to comfort and just as often to let us do our thing without thinking about the hurt that might result to either ourselves or others.  My mother loved promoting the myths of childhood.  She gained enormous pleasure watching her children’s pleasure.  That certainly explains her promotion of Santa and the Tooth Fairy.  I don’t think it ever occurred to her, that a child would feel she was lying to me.

A brute fact: Sooner or later all children feel parents have lied to them.  It is part of the way of humanity and relates to how children think. Before the age of six, children live in a magical world where wishes are reality, if you can think it up, it is real.

Then we  move to the stage of “Have to see it to believe it.” This is what Jean Piaget called the age of concrete thinking. Magic flies up the chimney and we test truths against personal experiences.  My entry into the ability to think more realistically combined with a Santa who drank and smoked cigarettes, not a pipe, marked my entry into this different level of thinking.

Thinking magically makes many children seem  bright and creative.  However, creative their magical thinking gets, they are not reality based.  Emotional intelligence involves being able to “code reality.”  Than means stepping out of wishful or comforting thinking at least when such thinking no longer accurately codes reality.

STAY STRONG

Hold on to magic that comforts and harms no others.  There are many things we humans do not know and that allows for magic and miracles.  At the same time, when you think you know something and keep hitting a brick wall of some sort, think more deeply and particularly about what matters.

Thank you for all you do, particularly for sharing and caring EFTI’s ideas on the internet.

Katherine

TODAY’S EFTI POSTER:

Emotional Fitness Poster Coach promoting peace and love to build Emotional Intelligence

Most EFTI  posters posted on my blog can be obtained at the EFTI Store.  Many are free. Thank you for all you do and as always stay strong.

Katherine

ARTICLES OF INTEREST

Precious Children? Bah, Humbug

A Daily Prompt asked who you found precious. In my usual contrarian but #EmotionalIntelligence thinking about what matters I said “Bah, Humbug. ” This  cartoon says it all.

bratty children

Remember when advertisers didn’t emulate the Disney Channel?  Not that our children are not worthy of un-conditional love; but that means love in spite of flaws and we all have flaws.

parent advice AND TIps regarding precious

Love your children enough to prepare them for life in the real lane.  Even toddlers need love that limits, teaches, and acknowledges flaws.

Moreover, there comes a time, when children will see undeserved praise as lying and or “That’s because you are my parent.”   What to do? Try my CARE response to criticize while keeping love strong.

  1. C = Confront unacceptable behavior and this must be done in a way the child stops to think. Yes, that might mean yelling
  2. A= Ally with the child: as soon as you have the child’s attention. Shift angry or harsh face to Soft Face.  See today’s EFTI poster.
  3. R = Review: make certain the child knows what was unacceptable. Explain to the very small in five or six one syllable words: ask children over five to tell you what they did that needed correcting.
  4. End on a positive note. “I know you can and will d

For more ways to keep children on the track to true self acceptance  peruse my book Parents Are People Too.

Remember that liking, commenting, or sharing is an act of social media kindness.  Practicing kindness  strengthens you and moves the world toward peace. 

As always, thank you for your support, it means a great deal to me.

Katherine

TODAY’S EFTI POSTER COACH

Soft face poster

Links of interest

DISCLAIMER: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIAIf you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. I have dysgraphia which means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are. Thanks for your understanding and reading my work.

Perfect Parents? Baloney.

Daily Prompt: Out of Your Reach  What have you always wanted to be the perfect  a parent?  Who doesn’t, but ti will  always been “Out of Reach.”  

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/10/out-of-your-reach/

Not that I agree children are always normal.  And as one pundit said some time ago: “Insanity is inherited, you catch it from your children.

The media has created the idea there are perfect parents somewhere in the world. Lies, lies, and more lies.  Parenting is a messy business and perfect parents a myth.

Go for good enough, almost good enough, and occasionally crazy.  Your children will be strengthened and better prepared for life in the real world.

Stay Strong

Visit my Daily Twelve Emotional Fitness Exercises .  Practice them and keep your craziness to a Can’t-commit-you level. Easily practiced each one was specifically designed to improve  #EmotionalIntelligence.

Remember that liking, commenting, or sharing is an act of social media kindness.  Practicing kindness  strengthens you and helps me and others.

As always, thank you for your support, it means a great deal to me.

Katherine

Today’s EFTI Poster Coach

!2 Easy Emotional Fitness Poster

DISCLAIMER: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIAIf you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. I have dysgraphia which means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are. Thanks for your understanding and reading my work.